Manny Perez has been called up to the USA u-23 squad for their October training camp which leads into a friendly against El Salvador next Tuesday.
The u-23 squad are aiming for a place at next summer’s Olympic Games in Japan, to qualify they will need to finish in the top two of eight from a qualifying tournament staged in Mexico from March 20 to April 1. The defender joined Celtic in January and was instantly sent on loan to North Carolina who play in the US Championship, the second tier of the game in North America.
It’s believed that Perez didn’t meet the criteria for a work permit from the SFA but that could change of he becomes a full internationalist.
Covering his call-up the US National Team website reports:
North Carolina FC defender Manny Perez will replace Duncan in South Florida. The outside back was a part of the USA squad that won the 2018 Concacaf U-20 Championship in Bradenton, Fla. and has made 19 appearances for North Carolina this season.
— Manny perez (@mannyP113) October 7, 2019
Perez returned to Celtic in June to take part in pre-season training but was unable to play in any of the matches in Austria and Switzerland where fellow loanee Andrew Gutman made a couple of appearances.
When Celtic were first linked with Perez he was described as a right-back but most reports this year have labelled him in a more attacking role with the US site calling him ‘an outside back’.
Since signing for Celtic the hoops have added Hatem Abd Elhamed and Moritz Bauer to their squad but the biggest challenge to Perez would appear to come from Jeremie Frimpong who made his top team debut in the Betfred Cup win against Partick Thistle.